While Chinese export figures were up for January, they fell sharply in February, according to official data. They increased 9.1 percent in January, but fell 20.7 percent in February, compared with the same period in 2018. Exports from China to its biggest trading partner, the United States, fell 14.1 percent to $52.3 billion (€46.6 billion) in the first two months of 2019, customs data showed on Friday. Exports to the world dropped 4.6 percent overall to $353.2 billion for the two-month period. The two months are taken together for analysis because of the Lunar New Year holiday, when factories close for up to two weeks. Markets eye a recession Asian stock markets fell on the unexpected news. The Shanghai Composite tumbled 4.4 percent while Hong Kong's Hang Seng sank 1.9 percent. Imports into China in January and February were down 3.1 percent from a year earlier at $309.5 billion, reflecting slowing domestic economic activity. "Today's trade figures reinforce our view that … [Read more...] about Chinese exports fall amid weak demand, US tariffs
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I want us to vote to leave the EU before it’s too late, because that’s the safer choice for Britain. If we vote to stay we’re not settling for a secure status quo. We’re voting to be hostages locked in the back of the car and driven headlong towards deeper EU integration. Brussels has already set out some of its plans for the next great transfer of powers to the EU in what’s called the Five Presidents’ Report. The EU wants more power over taxes and banks. Sadly, we’ve surrendered our veto on these moves. And – what’s worse – if we try to object, the European court of justice can overrule us. The court has been strengthened through the new charter of fundamental rights. It can now control how we apply asylum rules, how our intelligence services monitor suspected terrorists, and whom we can deport. And just as we are losing all this power, we’re on the hook to pay more money as new countries join the EU. But if we vote to … [Read more...] about Michael Gove makes case for EU exit: ‘It’s time to take back control’
Should we boycott prawns? I have been asked that question repeatedly since the Guardian's investigation revealing the use of slaves in the chain that brings them from Thailand to our plates. The slavery we uncovered was no metaphor – we found trafficked migrants who had been bought and sold, and forced with extreme violence to work at sea for no pay for years. The fish they catch is used to make feed for intensive prawn production by the world's largest producer and supermarket supplier, CP Foods. Is it right to eat products that depend on such fundamental abuse of human rights? Consumer boycotts have been influential in bringing about change – against the horrors of apartheid, for instance – but on their own they have absolute limits. Just because slavery has been found in part of the food chain, we should not delude ourselves that changing the shopping basket will be enough. And why stop at prawns when so many other supply chains, from soya to rare minerals, are … [Read more...] about I’m boycotting tropical prawns. But slavery demands a political solution
A blind mystic who correctly predicted Brexit, 9/11, the rise of ISIS and the Boxing Day tsunami also warned of conflict in Syria, nuclear war and the demise of the US president. As tensions rise between the United States and North Korea, conspiracy theorists believe prophetess Baba Vanga may have foretold a catastrophic global war. The Bulgarian - who died in 1996 aged 85 - was known as the 'Nostradamus from the Balkans'. She is revered in Russia for her 85% success rate when it comes to telling the future - with millions convinced that she possessed paranormal abilities. Before she died, the clairvoyant made a chilling prophecy about the use of nuclear weapons and World War 3. Baba prophesised a 2016 invasion of Europe by Muslim extremists, a conflict she predicted would begin with the Arab Spring in 2010. She also forewarned of a showdown in Syria where “Muslims would use chemical warfare against Europeans”. The prediction is eerily similar to the Sarin gas attack … [Read more...] about Was blind mystic Baba Vanga’s prediction about Syria conflict, nuclear warfare and WW3 just off by a year?